Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Forum Archive: The Fate franchise has gone to sh!t

Here I debunk the claim that even Fate/stay night was immature and had a focus on fanservice and moe because of its origins as an eroge, when this couldn't be farther from the truth.
Fate/stay night is over 50 hours long, and out of those hours, you probably spend MAYBE 3 hours on sex scenes (if you are a slow reader or if you don't skip them altogether because contrary to what a Type Moon fag might tell you, the h-scenes are completely irrelevant, hence the removal/replacement of them in the future Realta Nua releases of the game). The other hours that aren't adrenaline rushing badass action scenes of ideals being pitted against other ideals, are boring monologues (a major flaw, but not anything to do with cute moe fanservice like the franchise is known for today), and some mellow slice of life scenes that weren't reliant on moe comedy but rather world building and conversations that deepened the character's relationships with one another. There were probably less fanservice scenes and moe scenes in FSN than there were h scenes, and that's saying something! The only fanservice scene I can think of is the Saber bathtub scene! The other sexual scenes are not meant to be titillating, and if you got aroused from the scene with Saber being molested by Caster then that says a lot more about you than anything else.
Anyways... onto the actual post I wrote on MAL.

MAL Forum Thread:

My post is on page 4 (Post #159).

ssjokg said:
The bias tho.

Somehow it is fine to have King Arthur as a teenage girl but if another series does it to another character it is instantly the worst thing ever.

HikariJake's reply:
EDIT: Just realized that there are 4 pages of this thread but my post should still be somewhat relevant, I would think.

Fate stay night was mostly a fight of men. What I mean by that is, even though it was an eroge, the focus of Fate stay night was not the cuteness of the girls. Fanservice and moe played a minor role, but for the most part, Fate stay night was about idealism, a fight of philosophy, and hell, even the term GAR stemmed from it because Archer was so fucking macho and badass. Fate stay night was an intense thriller with hardly any cute fanservice.

Let's think of it this way: out of 7 servants, 4 of them were male (and adult men, to boot). Add in Gilgamesh, and we had 5 male servants against 3 female servants, and 1 of those female servants wore a hood and the other covered her eyes (AND they were both adult women!), so the only servant that could be seen as "cute" was Saber; yet, Saber's armor was very modest and (fairly) practical, covering all of her body. Fate/stay night was mature. The only moe character in stay night was Illya, and she was fucking psychotic. See where I'm getting at? Saber being a woman wasn't an issue, because of the mature way in which her and the other characters were presented. All of the servants were adults (excluding Saber) and the only one that had fanservicey clothes was Rider, and it made sense for her character. Add in the fact that Rider was a sexy woman instead of a slutty loli and that also makes her fanservice far more bearable and less immoral.

What I'm saying is, Fate began as a mature, dark series that had very little fanservice and moe. That all went down the shitter with Hollow Ataraxia. The most popular Fates are FSN and Fate/Zero for a reason: they are mature and aren't a moe shitfest. This is why people complain about every Fate other than stay night and Zero. It isn't hypocritical in the least to point out that Fate has become less mature.

ssjokg replied to me, but Neizaru replied more or less how I would have replied (maybe even better than I would have replied) so I didn't feel the need to reply again.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Fascinating take on Fullmetal Alchemist 2003's themes

"Honestly, one of the reasons that I prefer 2003 is that it ditches the concept of Equivalent Exchange. The protagonist is allowed to be wrong for a change, and as Dante picks his ideology apart by citing how unfair the world is, Ed is unable to offer a proper rebuttal. He's never able to explain to her why some people are born with more talent than others or why some are born poor, work hard in an attempt to claw their way up to sustainable living standard, and die penniless.

Metaphorically, this is also why Ed is able to bring Al back to life without offering an exchange of equivalent value, culminating in the end of Ed’s coming of age story. This just comes off as a far more realistic view of the world, in comparison to the heavily idealistic view expressed in Brotherhood. Mustang summarizes it perfectly: "The world isn't perfect, but that's why it's so damn beautiful." Brotherhood didn't offer that level of insight or catharsis; it was just entertaining."

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Zelda and its traditional values

The Legend of Zelda, to me, always has been a pure Hero's Journey fantasy epic of a young boy living out the path destined for him: becoming a hero of good, destroying the evil that plagues humanity. In this quest, a boy becomes a man, and this is so very inspiring to me as a young man myself.

Stories these days have had this perception that with humanity, things can never be black and white (evil and good); that idealistic hero figures are boring and unrealistic. But that's something I find cool about Zelda; Link is, without a doubt, pure heroism. People say that Link isn't a character, and they'd be partially right. He hasn't had much personality throughout the years, and I personlly think that Nintendo should step it up and give him more personality-- however, that doesn't destroy what he is: he's a symbol of courage, of hope, of everything I want to be as a man. When it comes down to it, Link is a symbol of masculinity (more on that in a bit). Someone who puts his fear aside and follows the righteous path set out by the wise Princess and the holy goddesses.

That's something very prevalent throughout Zelda: spirituality. In Zelda 1 and 2, Link has had a cross on his shield to symbolize that he's a warrior for good. But when Ocarina of Time truly delved into the "religion" of the Triforce and the Goddesses that created it, that is when spirituality can truly be felt throughout the Zelda franchise. Whatever you believe of religion, and of all the bad that it has most certainly caused throughout history, the base principals of the most prominent religion that shaped the values of Western culture-- Christianity-- is the opposite of nihilism and believing that humanity is a carnal, worthless existence; in other words, of all the faults of Christianity, it has some valuable ideals of morality at the root of it all. And I say that as a highly agnostic individual.
Christianity, and Christ himself above all else in the Bible, is something that was symbolized in the first two Zeldas, and is a religion and a belief that emphasizes selflessness, something that has been featured in many, if not all Zeldas throughout the franchise's history. The noble, courageous hero that helps citizens across his journey to defeat the evil villain-- that is selflessness, something that Link undeniably embodies.

What I'm getting at, is that Zelda is one of the few franchises that consistently upholds its pure and its 'conservative' values, while not being preachy about it. Some may say that Zelda is very boring and repetitive with its story and that its morality only comes out of its story being a generic Hero's Journey plot, but that's part of its charm. It doesn't let the cynical nature of modern society change it. There hasn't been a Man of Steel installment in the Zelda franchise that turns Link into an edgy, depressed hero. Zelda is and always will be a pure Hero's Journey story that houses spiritual themes and morals, and that is something I can definitely appreciate.

Now, something I also find intriguing is the portrayal of masculinity and femininity in Zelda. To the dismay of some, Zelda is also quite consistent with its portrayals of males and females. I will try my hardest to explain why this is a good thing. For starters, Zelda doesn't portray females as weak-- not at all. But it doesn't take the stance that women and men are interchangeable.

Let's look at the Triforce for starters: courage and power are both held by males, while wisdom is held by a female. And Aonuma made it clear that he did not want that to change; he didn't think it would be natural for that to change (hence the statement that Link will always be a guy).

But why do the males hold the courage and power, while the female holds the wisdom? This is something I find fascinating; power is male out of the thought that masculinity in a psychological sense is the urge to become more powerful and compete with others. And throughout history, what else men needed along with power was courage in order to hunt big game and to explore uncharted lands to expand territory (which directly correlates with power). These are things that come to mind when I think 'masculinity'. I think of Hercules and of mythological heroes, and of the classic hero archetype in general who is strong and who fights the dragon to obtain the treasure and save the princess. Obviously, a female can be these things too, but if you want to talk about the average, the average male is more likely to be 'masculine' than a female is, and is most certainly going to be physically stronger. I think this is the mind process of Aonuma when he said he thinks there need to be two men to balance out the Triforce together with the wisdom piece.

Also to be noted is that power and courage show masculinity at its darkest versus at its lightest. Link and Ganon are almost like the two extremes of Christ and Satan. It's black and white, but they embody extremes of what humanity is capable of-- what a man can become determined by the path they follow.

So why is wisdom female? After all, there were plenty of wise male philosophers throughout history, and there still are. But to answer that, we must establish: what's the biggest difference between a man and a woman, biologically? A woman births children and raises them as a mother. So for wisdom to be female, I think it's because wisdom is more maternal in a sense. A mother raises her child; when it comes to a more traditional family (and as I've mentioned, Zelda is quite traditional with its stories and themes), a mother will be more protective and will look over her child more than the father (traditionally, the father was out of the house working more). Because of this, the mother will pass her teachings of wisdom over to the child. Another thing relating to motherhood as portrayed in Zelda: look at the gods of the Zelda universe. They are all women; therefore, they are always referred to as goddesses. It's almost as if they're symbolizing how women are the creators of life. These goddesses are the mothers of existence. It's really interesting and honestly beautiful how the females are almost always the spiritual beings in the Zelda universe; it symbolizes how important femininity and motherhood is in a happy, functional society. A society of which a courageous hero would want to protect against a powerful tyrant.

Another reason I think wisdom is female is because wisdom does not correlate with the typical traits of masculinity. You look at modern society, and men have the more physical, laborious jobs (which require power and courage to properly do their job. Remember, these jobs are very dangerous). The same could be said throughout history, that men had these jobs (aside from war time when women had to work in factories, which is not common these days). However, there's an interesting development in modern Western society that has opened up due to women having more rights than they did in the past: women are getting better grades and perform better in college. When it comes to the number of college graduates, women far outnumber men. Modern men are highly likely to drop out of college, even. I doubt Nintendo really looked at these statistics in deciding that wisdom is more applicable to femininity, but it's interesting how society is even showing how masculinity and femininity generally lead to very different life paths, and how the Triforce kind of represents these roles.

What's cool about Zelda is that it doesn't show any of these sides as more valid than the other. They are three equal pieces for a reason. It also shows women being powerful (Gerudo) and courageous (I'd say that Zelda herself is very courageous), so women aren't necessarily outnumbered in the Triforce. But as an idea of masculinity and femininity, I love how the Triforce symbolizes the yin and the yang of these two sexes. Masculinity is the powerful, courageous hero that protects society. Femininity is the graceful, wise creator and nurturer of society.

The Legend of Zelda shows the balance of good and evil, of men and women; and for young boys, it is an epic journey into manhood. For young girls, it's an epic journey that teaches them a lot about life and their inner wisdom in general. I think that's part of the reason why this series is as timeless as it is, even from a story standpoint.

Monday, June 12, 2017

"Anime" means "Animation", it doesn't have to be from Japan - What really grinds my f*cking gears #1

Over and over and over, ever since an, uh, "anime" from China called "The King's Avatar" has taken the otakuverse by storm, people have been flocking the comments sections of Youtube with comments such as "At this rate anime will be define as Asian Animation instead of Japanese Animation...." Now, this comment sounds neither enthusiastic nor pessimistic about the idea, but the comments that follow adore the concept.
This really grinds my f*cking gears!

"Anime means Animation, so..."
"Anime is a slang for animation in Japanese"

Regardless of the original Japanese intent, in the West fans of Japanese animation have taken the slang "anime" as a catchy name for "Animation from Japan" and decided to run with it. For more than two decades, "anime" has meant "Animation from Japan" to the vast majority of the world (yes, the vast majority of the world calls Japanese animation and exclusively Japanese animation "anime"). If you truly believe "anime" means nothing more than "animation", try calling Shrek an anime to the average person and you'll be either laughed at or they'll take it as a joke. That's why, animation from China is not anime, and I will stand by that.
Two years ago, the anime community would have scorned over the thought of calling anything made outside of Japan "anime". Now that another Asian country is making animation that looks similar to anime and it's becoming popular in Japan, all of a sudden people are okay with calling it "anime" and decide to use  the defense of "well anime just means cartoons"? Come on, man. Hell, Frozen was extremely popular in Japan, why not call that an anime too?

"Sorry to break it to you, but anime is in fact cartoons, and anything animated is anime as per the original definition of the word." - Some asshat on YouTube
Sorry to break it to you, but the definition doesn't really matter if people don't abide by it. Around the world for the past two decades, "anime" has meant "animation from Japan". There's a reason why the term "Japanimation" transformed into "anime"; it was a new, easier to say and attractive term for Japanese animation that caught on. So whether or not anime means "cartoon" in Japanese has no relevance to what the word has become to the rest of the world.

"considering anime (アニメ) is short for animeeshon (アニメーション) or animation yeah anime is defined as not only asian animation but american animation as well is a common misconception to believe that anime is only japanese animation. The More you know"
If you're speaking in the Japanese language, then sure. But in Western countries and speaking in the English language, "anime" refers to Japanese animation. JFC!

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Berserk 1997 is one of the greats of anime - Otaku Thoughts #59

I originally wrote this on this very blog, but then turned it into a post on the Berserk subreddit and edited it a lot more. It got a lot of recognition on the Berserk subreddit and sparked lots of discussion, which made me very happy. Here's the Reddit post, but if you happen to be here, then just read the one on this blog, as it's the same but the pictures and videos are embedded into the post (and I added more pictures and captions)! Then check out the comments on the Reddit post because they're very intriguing!

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Air: The Motion Picture - Otaku Thoughts #58

This is the Air that I always dreamed of.
I really wish I had watched this film earlier; like Psycho Pass 2, I was put off from the low score of this film on MAL (anything below 7.70 on MAL is relatively low, for MAL's standards). Unlike Psycho Pass 2, though, I actually put this film off for not two years, but nearly FOUR years. In the watching of this film, I got a sense of fulfillment knowing that all of my issues with the Air TV series were realized in a concise narrative.

Friday, May 5, 2017

"It's all subjective."

"It's all subjective."
"It's just my opinion."

OF COURSE it's your opinion. But, that's the beauty of opinions: they can be changed. Unless you're saying that you do not have an open mind, then opinions are not set in stone like facts are.
Subjectivity can still be argued. In fact, they can be debated more so than facts, because facts are, well, objective. There's a truth to facts. A truth that cannot be argued, if it is a real fact, that is.
At the same token, there can be objective backing to a subjective view. I can say that, for example, Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood is the greatest shounen anime-- an opinionated statement-- but then I can back up that statement with relatively objective viewpoints, such as it has lots of plot buildup, a dynamic soundtrack, fluid fights, few noticeable animation quality dips for 64 episodes, etc.
If you are having a conversation, or a debate with another person, and they say, after you argue your points adequately, "It's all subjective", or "It's just an opinion", then they either A) Cannot find flaws in your argument, or B) Couldn't care less to evaluate your arguments and learn that your point of view has legitimacy. It is most likely the latter, because most arguments with a subjective view, even when backed by some objectivity, tend to be flawed. Regardless, even if it does happen to be the latter, then that just proves that they don't actually care much about their own opinions, nor of your own. At the end of it all, it is frustrating and most certainly a shame whenever someone couldn't be bothered to give their thoughts on a matter and only say "It's all subjective", because it adds nothing to the conversation. I myself love hearing and debating different points of views. I like learning of other subjectivities and broadening my horizons. I can't learn about the views of another if they only point out what is lying on face value: that their subjective opinion is "subjective".

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

I believe that anime is an artform - Otaku Thoughts #57

As a male anime fan, I do appreciate looking at pretty anime girls.
The reason why I retweet cute anime girls from these series that I don't connect with, is because, as an aspiring artist, looking at a well-drawn female form is incredibly valuable to me.
So then, how come shows like Eromanga-sensei don't appeal to me very much? It has pretty girls. Well-drawn ones, in fact.
Well, it's because I also appreciate it when a story treats its audience as people who want to consume art, not just petty fanservice and dick jokes.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Oreimo VS Eromanga-sensei

A YouTube commenter told me something along the lines of this (well, actually, he told me exactly this):
"it looks like oreimo bcoz it was written by the same author.. Oreimo should have been better, the author tried to be unique with the story but wasn't able to give it a good ed and it turn to a complete flop making it one of the worst anime.. since the author made a huge mistake on oreimo he decided to do another series, ero manga it really have the same oreimo vibes and fans from the his previous series are speculating this will turn out to be the same oreimo flop, but it didn't the author learned a lot from the mistakes the flaws of oreimo and made it better, some fans say this is what oreimo should have been in the first place, I'm also one of the people who criticize the series before it aired that it will be the same oreimo shit all over again but after watching the 3 eps of the series you can probably tell the author didn't want us to compare this to his previous work and this is a new and better series.."

As a fan of Oreimo, I found this absurd, and so I responded as such:
"I very much disagree with you saying that Oreimo was a complete flop, and also with your statement of Eromanga sensei being better. Oreimo's characters were actually believable, while, for example, Elf Yamada is nowhere within my suspension of disbelief even close to a person that I could fathom existing. Kyousuke was an interesting MC who actually wanted what was best for his sister, instead of being like the MC of Eromanga who is basically an enabler, letting his little sister be an irresponsible shut in. Sure, she interacts with people online, but she does absolutely nothing for herself. And MC just takes it. I could go on about how Kuroneko actually feels like a real person, as she's an otaku girl but is overall just a normal girl in a normal family, not an elven nudist piano-playing light novel author 14 year old girl who bought her own house even though she clearly isn't responsible enough to own said house because she just leaves the window wide open without the curtains shut while completely naked, but I digress...
Case in point: Oreimo is actually believable, and I didn't touch upon this much, but Kyousuke becoming immersed in otaku culture after being a "normie" was super entertaining to experience throughout the show, and the humor was charming. Eromanga sensei has a buttload of contrived plot conveniences and ridiculous characters. It's fun, it's cute, and it's not unenjoyable, but so far, I can't say it's much more than that, and it certainly isn't better than Oreimo."

This was on my heavily disliked Eromanga-sensei Ep. 3 Live Reaction video, and I'm only archiving this here just in case my video gets removed from copyright.

Welcome to the NHK is the only work of art that captures how I feel, and what I am - Otaku Thoughts #56

I hate it when people say something along the lines of "There are other people like you."
It feels so forced, and it seems like just a wishy-washy, half-hearted statement from people with more fulfilling lives with nothing better to tell you, because they don't and never will understand who you are nor how you feel. Whether they realize it or not, they are looking down on you, because if telling someone "There are other people like you" or "It's okay to be how you are" or "It's normal to have those feelings", but leave it at that and do nothing more to truly help, then they don't give two shits about you.
I don't ask to be pitied, I only want to point out how much it feels like there really isn't anyone else like me out there:
I've been a chronic truant in school with such social anxiety that I couldn't hang out with any of the (very few) kids who wanted to hang out with me, since the 6th grade.
My therapist has told me, after being shown my school attendance records, that he's "never seen anything like this". That I had the absolute worst school attendance he'd ever seen, besides kids who had dropped out.
People talking about me behind my back apparently isn't even only in my head; I remember a "friend" telling me that people, whenever I wasn't in the classroom, would say how weird I was for never talking, being so quiet.
I've been sent to a mental hospital twice, in the school refusal/social anxiety program... and I was the only one in the program that couldn't connect with others. I was the only one that would still sit by myself, while all the other apparently socially anxious kids chatted away with one another, shared Facebooks (even though that was forbidden to exchange contact info), and generally became friends with one another.
I have had my driving permit for almost a year (it's nearly expired), and despite my parents pushing me to get my license, I'm far too afraid to take the driving test; not for the driving aspect, but because of the social aspect of being tested, alone in a car with a person I don't even know.
I've been on more depression and anxiety meds than I can count, and over the years I've been on them, I've only gotten worse; I've only stood cooped up in my room more, depressed and thinking to myself how much I want to die, and how much I hate the world.

So, what does this have to do with Welcome to the NHK's original novel, which I'm currently reading, as well as its anime?

Saturday, April 22, 2017

On the lack of character development with Light Yagami

Light Yagami didn't need character development. He wasn't exactly made to be relatable to most people; he was hellbent on his own ideals and was a manipulative bastard, and what would you know, he always one-upped his opponents. His strategy and outlook worked. His ideals were broad enough that even when questioned, he could justify it, because whether people should be allowed to kill others and become a God has no objective answer.
Light is stubborn, intelligent, and cunning. His character is what makes Death Note so appealing-- and no, not necessarily his personality, although his personality was entertaining-- but his twisted ideals and how they would always beat out the more socially-accepted standards of "justice" that L would uphold, all the way up until the very end when Light got too cocky.
Death Note is a series that is about a narcissistic man's downward spiral into getting a taste of karma biting him in the ass. His lack of development was intentional; since Light never changed his outlook and was so stubbornly sure that he was the definitive justice, he ends up thinking he knows how to manipulate everyone and read their minds. He thought he could just fool N the same way he's fooled everyone else, because Light hadn't developed enough to know that his same old tricks wouldn't work. And unlike most series which would protect the main character's lack of development with plot armor, Light ends up losing. His losing was intended from the start, as was his lack of development.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Nico Niiyama (Kiznaiver) ~Beauty of Anime Character Designs~

I think the biggest reason why I love anime and decide to watch majority anime over any other medium is because I have an attraction to the general anime artstyle. 
I was drawn to the Pokémon anime as a child because I thought Ash Ketchum, with his look of serious determination, was more admirable and cool than other cartoon characters; with the females, I thought that Dawn was so cute and pretty. Obviously, as characters, they are obnoxious and cliche, but their designs look so appealing. 
When I turned on the Hub channel, Deltora Quest really drew me in for similar reasons; Lief had a look of a noble hero in the vein of Link from Legend of Zelda, another series with a predominantly "anime" artstyle. 
Then Fullmetal Alchemist brought me into the entire world of anime, and Edward Elric had the perfect "cool" character design that the me in middle school so aspired to be.
This is why anime that have radically different, unique artstyles don't grab my interest as much. I want the beautiful anime eyes, the gorgeous, flowing hair... Something about it clicks with me more than the extremely exaggerated designs of Western children's cartoons, or even live action.

I am doing this series for that very reason. And so, I will be looking at different anime and expressing the 
~Beauty of Anime Character Designs~

Nico has a very... outlandish design.
Yet somehow, she manages to pull it off as cute! The craziness of her design tells you exactly what kind of character she is.
Her facial expressions are bubbly, always emotive, with big wide eyes. Her eyebrows are stubby, and her mouth is larger than the average anime girl-- with her big mouth, you are able to tell that she is loud and obnoxious, in an endearing way because of its roundness.
Her design would traumatize Death the Kid, as Nico is completely asymmetrical:

  • one arm has a flower bracelet on it, the other has her Kiznaiver scars
  • on one hip is her green bear thing, the other has nothing
  • one leg has a pink-starred green thigh-high sock, the other has a pink sock a little higher than her ankles
  • her hair bands are different, and one of her wavy pigtails is even slightly longer than the other! 
The sheer detail to asymmetricality is really impressive and must have been a pain in the ass to draw and animate, but I'm glad that they put such attention to detail in Nico's design because not only is she hella cute, but the asymmetrical design further adds to the visual story of her character and tells you that she is not orderly or neat but very childish and lighthearted, if not a bit kooky.
Even the contrasting colors of her hair that do not match whatsoever add in to Nico's asymmetry; the patterns, the colors, almost nothing about Nico's design is refined.
Perhaps the only bit of symmetry with Nico's design other than her face is the pink rabbit thing that she dons as a long necklace right down the middle all the way to her tummy, and the two little, what would appear to be, pink bears on her matching shoes. Personally, I wish that even her shoes were different colors or even different types of shoes, that would have been funny but oh well, kind of a missed opportunity.
Her posture has her feet put close together, but her toes are pointed straight forward, even a bit outward, which is ever-so-slightly off center, like her personality. Her fingers are stretched outward, and her hands are in a girly pose, so we can tell that she's energetic with feminine mannerisms.
We can't end this without mentioning the poofiness of her skirt which compliments her poofy, goofy personality.
Nico's design is completely formatted around her zany personality; this is the kind of design that you don't even need to watch the show to know what kind of adorable girl Nico is.
Hell, even her surname, Niiyama, looks funny. Everything about her is funny!
Nico's absurdly cute design oozes charm, and is perhaps the one most creative I've ever seen. I would love to own an figure of her; hopefully one of her will be made in the future, however unfortunately doubtful that is.
Kiznaiver has a lot of fantastic character designs, so I will most certainly be covering some if not all of the other characters. Stay tuned!


Sunday, April 9, 2017

The Tsukihime anime DOES exist - Otaku Thoughts #55

No you didn't. Don't kid yourself, MAL user by the name of "McRib". You went in expecting to write a MAL review to 'comically' shit on the show and get views, and congrats, you succeeded.
You know, I've seen the statement of "I wanted to be the one to give the show a chance" used multiple times by people who "gave the anime a shot" but ended up hating it along with everyone else.

"So there's a funny little joke that goes around anime communities and it goes along the lines of 'There is no Tsukihime anime'. I thought it was all in jest when I decided to see what the fuss was about on this show. Sadly though, I too believe there is no Tsukihime anime after watching this monstrosity." 

Why can't anime fans see the beauty in the Tsukihime anime?

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Masamune-kun no Revenge isn't a harem, nor is it similar to Nisekoi - Otaku Thoughts #54

Quick thoughts of Masamune-kun no Revenge, from my MAL tags:
Awesome premise with a hilarious main character who's internal monologues at times made this show feel like Death Note meets a romance anime. Character development was great until last 3 eps when things reverted to how they were in the beginning. Rating: Enjoyable

This post is from a MAL topic I made that got little attention but I liked how I worded it so I'll archive it here as an Otaku Thoughts post. Read this post because I add more thoughts and have pictures.

Masamune has three girls as potential love interests, which is enough to be considered a harem; a small harem, but a harem nonetheless.

But here's why it isn't a harem:

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Quick thoughts about Arcueid's Route (True Ending) - Tsukihime (Visual Novel)

Perhaps it's just because we can read Shiki's thoughts in the internal monologues of the visual novel, but how he so clearly and boldly expresses his love for Arcueid is so unlike any other protagonist I have witnessed.
Somehow, the h-scene was filled with love and passion, not vulgarity and empty lustfulness. The love between the two was so clearly conveyed in this h scene, and instead of making me aroused, it made my heart flutter with warmth.
The "What if" dialogue brought up between Shiki and Arcueid, SPOILERSlater to be brought up again on Arcueid's deathbed,END OF SPOILERS brought tears to my eyes.

"Hey Shiki. What if?

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Anime is NOT as Sexual and Perverted as Modern Western Culture - Otaku Thoughts #53

Note: There are always exceptions to what I talk about. This post is referring to the average anime, not, say, Ninja Scroll or Berserk, which have many sexual scenes.

In American sitcoms and comedy specials and dramas, everyone is sleeping around and everything is sex, sex, alcohol, and more goddamn sex.
Now, what about anime?
People say that Japan is super perverted and over sexual with their entertainment but I disagree. Sure, there's panty shots but nothing about sleeping around and being a whore is glorified in any anime-- not counting Galko-chan, KissxSis, and Futari Ecchi.

And excluding Shimoneta, too... lol

Saturday, March 11, 2017

Amagami SS (Season 1, SS+, and Miya OVA) - Otaku Thoughts #52

Amagami SS
is a beloved romance anime that adapts EVERY route from its original VN, Amagami.
How it does this, is it spends 4 episodes on a girl, and then resets to the beginning and moves on to the next route.
It's rather unique in this aspect, and most of the routes are heartwarming romances that do well to fit its stories into four episodes.
Since every arc is so different, I will be going over every arc individually, giving them each their own "rating". At the end, I will give an overall "score" to the entire show: this includes the first season, Miya's OVA, and the second season, SS+!
This post will contain a lot of spoilers (I couldn't resist talking about some of this stuff lol)

Monday, February 27, 2017

Nintendo's Fall from Power - Otaku Thoughts #51

This was for my Speech class but I thought I'd turn it into an Otaku Thoughts post as a lot of anime fans are also into gaming and Nintendo. Enjoy!

There’s a popular misconception amongst gamers that Nintendo was never about hardware power and only about creating games-- the graphics didn’t matter to Nintendo, people think.
This is utterly false. Nintendo used to be a consistently strong competitor to other companies in terms of hardware power all the way up until the Wii; why did Nintendo stop creating traditional consoles that boasted power, that could compete with Sony’s PlayStation and Microsoft’s Xbox? For so long, 4 whole video game generations, in fact (which was over 20 years), Nintendo was a powerhouse of gaming. Their Nintendo Entertainment System slogan in the 1980’s even said, “Now you’re playing with power!”

They used to be cool; now Nintendo’s only known as the old, out of touch Japanese company that creates Mario and Zelda. What happened?

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Why is Psycho Pass 2 so loathed by the anime community? - Otaku Thoughts #50

I held off on watching Psycho Pass 2 for over two years because I heard it was a trainwreck of disappointment that did not hold up to the thrilling sci fi police crime drama of season 1. The final nail in the coffin, though, was that my favorite character, Kogami, would not be appearing in season 2, either.

Mah boy Kogami
I decided back in 2014 as it was airing that it wasn't worth my time.
So why then, in early 2017, did I decide to give Psycho Pass 2 a shot? It was over two years ago that I finished season 1-- and I hadn't even rewatched it, but I still remember the details of the story and characters, because it was that ingrained in my mind.
Honestly, what convinced me to watch season 2 was something so silly: I downloaded the opening song, "Enigmatic Feeling" by the awesome band Ling Toshite Shigure (they also did the first OP of season 1 and the OP of Tokyo Ghoul, "unravel"). The song was so badass and gave me goosebumps and I've been in the mood for a thriller anime for a while, so I decided, screw it if Psycho Pass 2 is bad; hopefully it would at least be entertaining.
So I went in expecting it to be trash. Episode 1 was nothing special, sure, but episode 2 hooked me; by episode 4, it was so intense and I knew that Psycho Pass was back.

The rest of this post will contain heavy spoilers for Psycho Pass 2. So I'll put my rating here: Psycho Pass 2 is Wonderful-- wonderfully thrilling, chilling, sadistic and messed up, yet with a morally righteous main character of Akane and you just know that the atrocities of the conspiracy she and her group unravels won't corrupt her; you really root for Akane and hope she pulls through. That's good writing. And that's why, even though Psycho Pass 2 has very "edgy" scenes, I'm okay with it, because it wasn't forced and it had a purpose unlike Akame ga Kill.
Spoilers are ahead.
So why the hell is Psycho Pass 2 so loathed by the anime community? That's what I want to find out in this post. Let's pull up the negative (and very popular) MAL reviews regarding Psycho Pass 2.

Sunday, February 19, 2017

How certain kinds of anime are marketed-- usually involving cute girls! - Otaku Thoughts #49

My brother walked into my room and saw my anime collection; on the top of my shelf are all of my figures (I own mostly figmas... they're the cheapest and they're cool, so don't judge, lol-- most figure collectors don't like figmas because they're posable "action" figures and they don't consider them real "works of art", in case you didn't know).

Most of my anime figures!
(My Sakura Kinomoto and Asuka from Eva 3.0 prize figures are missing from this photo)
We started to talk about anime, and he doesn't know much about anime (he's never completed an anime other than some Miyazaki films and Batman: Gotham Knight), and he brought up a valid observation: all of my anime figures, with the exception of my Link figma, are cute female characters.
This isn't uncommon for an anime fan/collector. Female characters are by and large the mascots of most anime and are the most heavily marketed, even when they aren't the main character (such as in most visual novels).
Why is this? Well, that's what I'd like to discuss, and unlike my "Why Comedy Anime Fails to Make Me Laugh" post and the Yuri on Ice post I made where I explored the subject and tried to find the answer, right off the bat I already know the answer as to why cute/pretty girls are the most marketable:
Short answer? The vast majority of anime fans are single men who long for a girlfriend and love collecting their waifus and have gigabytes upon gigabytes of hentai containing their waifu.
But even though that basically explains it, there is another reason why I'm writing this post, and that's to explore how not all anime, and not even all popular anime, focus on marketing specifically their female characters, and why that is; I will be going through each specific kind of anime and see how they choose to market themselves. Let's go!

Monday, February 13, 2017

Kanon 06 is so Wonderful - Otaku Thoughts #48

My thoughts from this review still hold up so I decided I'd share it here! 
Kanon (2006) is so wonderful.
I'm really sick; I want to be posting frequently so today this is what I'll be posting. I'm going to head to sleep, so I will add pictures at a later time-- probably tonight. Done! Added pictures!

This post ended up becoming far more original and different from my 2014 review; it's like an extended version! Haha. The pictures and my modern thoughts make it a far more enjoyable, in-depth read.
I hope you enjoy this review~!
Anything in bold are edits made by the present me, AKA me at 11 PM 2/13/17 ahaha

"...It's a promise."

I remember, about a year ago, I watched Kanon 2006. It was good and all, but at the time, I just finished watching Clannad: After Story, which became my favorite anime ever (and still is). Because of that, all I did was compare Kanon to Clannad. And because of that I didn't like it very much. I soon forgot about Kanon, and whenever it was brought up in conversation, I always said, "Just watch Clannad. It's the same as Kanon, except 10 times better lolz."

...What an idiotic statement that is.

Otaku Thoughts change!

If you haven't already noticed, most of my "Otaku Thoughts" aren't so much reviews of the overall show as much as just, well, my thoughts on a certain aspect(s) of the show/movie/what have you. So from now on, I will not title an Otaku Thoughts post as if it were a review (ie. "Fullmetal Alchemist (2003; anime) - Otaku Thoughts #__) but will instead have the title relate to a more specific theme or question that the post focuses on (ie. "Fullmetal Alchemist 03 is like a Soap Opera compared to FMAB - Otaku Thoughts #__").
I will be renaming most of the Otaku Thoughts posts!
Because I'm turning this into even less of a review format, I will also, from now on, not be giving "scores" or "ratings" to any anime/manga/etc I write a post on. I will keep the ratings in the older posts, though!

~ HikariJake ~

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Intriguing Master and Slave Romance... from a Hentai?! - Otaku Thoughts #47

Rance Quest?
What is that, a knock off of Dragon Quest?
I'd rather read hentai doujinsh-- wait a sec...
This is a hentai?!
I'm actually going there...?!

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Yuri on Ice is more "heteronormative" than you think - Otaku Thoughts #46

In my "Diminishment of Masculinity and Male-Female Couples in Anime" post, I came down pretty hard on Yuri on Ice.
And in this post, I am going to burn Yuri on Ice even harder and end this once and for all.
To all of the people who think that Yuri on Ice isn't a poor representation of gay couples and isn't at all yaoi/fujoshi bait, but in fact a wonderful, unique homosexual romance between two truly masculine characters...
Well, buckle up, buttercup. 
Yuri on Ice is more "heteronormative" than you think.

Yuri!!!!!!1!! on Ice
was a mega smash-hit in the anime community for being so daring in that it has a couple that wasn't "queerbait" but legitimately gay. 
Wow, so bold. 
So original. 
It's not like being part of the LGBT narrative is the new fad these days--
It's not like a transsexual by the birth name of Bruce Jenner won the women of the year award for being a man who crossdresses and cut off his cock.

Tomoko is Mentally Ill - Otaku Thoughts #45

Watamote: No Matter How I Look At It, It's You Guys' Fault I'm Unpopular!
is an OreGairu, Welcome to the NHK-wannabe with a title that is far too long,
produced by Silver Link., a studio that is unnoteworthy, creating the comedy anime that I have no interest in watching Baka to Test, as well as the revolting, unrealistically melodramatic romance of Kokoro Connect... and Strike the Blood, an uninspired harem action piece of dogshit. And Chivalry of a Failed Knight, another uninspired harem but at least the main romance was beautiful and the action entertaining.
This studio is mediocre at best. So I suppose it's only fitting that Watamote, too, is mediocre at best.

Watamote was incredibly grating and painful to watch, as a person with social anxiety myself, but I have gotten much better with my social skills... and although I was really bad with my anxiety, I was never as bad as this mentally ill cunt of a protagonist, Tomoko.

Dear mother of God...

Thursday, January 5, 2017

In Blue Spring Ride, Love Prevails - Otaku Thoughts #44

Back when I first watched Blue Spring Ride (known as Ao Haru Ride in Japanese) as it was airing in 2014, I became bored of it, not wanting to watch a realistic slice of life romance. It seemed like a generic shoujo, and I decided to drop it.

Yeah, I know, right?
I dropped this show for two whole years.
After longing for a beautiful romance in my anime, I picked the show back up out of desperation-- and I realized...
Wow, was I wrong about this anime.

Monday, January 2, 2017

The Diminishment of Masculinity & Male-Female Couples in Anime - Otaku Thoughts #43

"I've always been fascinated and attracted to the subject of androgyny... exploring history, but the more I explored it, the more I realized that, historically, the movement towards androgyny occurs in late stages of culture, as a civilization is starting to unravel. You find it again and again and again in history.

In the Greek art, you can see it happen. All of a sudden, the sculptures of handsome nude young men athletes that used to be very robust in the Archaic period suddenly begin to seem like 'wet noodles' toward the end.
The people who live in such periods... the Hellenistic period... the Roman Empire... Weimar Germany... people who live in such times feel that they are very sophisticated, they're very cosmopolitan, and homosexuality, heterosexuality, so what, anything goes and so on. But, from the perspective of historical distance, you can see it's a culture that no longer believes in itself and then what you, invariably, get are people who are convinced of the power of heroic masculinity on the edges, whether they are the Vandals and the Huns, or whether they are the barbarians of ISIS. You see them starting to mass on the outside of the culture. And that's what we have right now."
~ Camille Paglia 

Important Note:
I really don't care if there are shows with gay couples. There have ALWAYS been shows with gay couples, and if you like that, more power to you.
My fear here, is the complete eradication or the lessening of shows with male-female couples, that contain actually badass, masculine guys-- or any guys AT ALL.
Also, I never did mention Drifters in this post. I never have seen it yet, so maybe that'll fill my void. Eh, regardless, I've been watching older anime (just finished Blue Spring Ride!!) so I'm okay for now.
And in a few months, I'll probably be back to watching moe lesbian shit again. Lmao
On to the post...

I appreciate characters like Kenshin from Rurouni Kenshin, Guts from Berserk, and Emiya Shirou from Fate/stay night; I wish there were more manly characters like them who share a beautiful romance with the woman they love and go out of their way to protect her in anime these days.

This is a thing of the past.
Make way for the 'progressive' couples in anime.
In an era of "toxic masculinity" infiltrating the minds of gullible people who read the media, along with Japan's obsession with moe shows with casts full of lesbian girls, I have a feeling that cool, honorable male characters who stand up for themselves and share a heartwarming romance with a pretty girl is only going to become more and more rare in anime and in entertainment in general.

In Defense of Emiya Shirou, Part 2: "Sexism" & Protecting Saber - Otaku Thoughts #42

First of all, Happy New Year to all of you, and here's to another anime-filled year of blogging!

Today on Otaku Thoughts, I want to tackle a major complaint of Shirou's character from Fate/stay night that seriously bugs me.

You see, one of the biggest complaints of Emiya Shirou, especially in the Fate route and the 2006 DEEN anime adaptation, is that he is "sexist".
I don't see that. I see quite the opposite.